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Biotechnology: Transgenesis

Year 10 Science

Taylor and Francis online


Genetically modified organisms (GMO) are plants, animals, bacteria or viruses that have been altered through the transfer or deletion of genes into or from the organism under consideration.


The genetic modification of animals to obtain transgenic animals started in 1980. The first transgenic animals were mice, which are still the most frequently used transgenic species.

The Guardian

Despite its potential to battle disease and hunger, genetically engineered food is still controversial.


Biotechnology can be good or bad for animals - and it may also produce an answer to the ethical problems of experimenting on animals.



The use of farm animals for the production of human pharmaceuticals raises difficult animal welfare issues. Does the benefit of biopharming to humans justify the use of animals for this purpose? What about products that improve the quality of human life but are not essential?


In this video and animation produced by Sonal Katyal MSc, Roslin PhD student Gus McFarlane explains how genetic modification, through a process called transgenesis, works and its potential to improve animals’ welfare, productivity or even produce a crucial drug to save human lives.

Animal Ethics



The Use of Animal Models in Studying Genetic Disease: Transgenesis and Induced Mutation.

Transgenic Animals in Agriculture

The Scientist


US NAS report says GM animals pose greater threat to environment than to human health.

Your Genome


Genetic engineering refers to the direct manipulation of an organism’s genes to alter or enhance certain characteristics.


What are the animal welfare issues with genetic modification of farm animals?